Fernando Alonso says the McLaren-Renault MCL33 “ran perfectly all day” as he completed the first Formula 1 pre-season test at Circuit de Catalunya.

The two-time F1 world champion took over from teammate Stoffel Vandoorne for the final three hours of track action after the Belgian had completed 110 laps with a best time of 1m 19.854s to take second place on the timesheet.

Alonso notched up 51 laps before the chequered flag appeared to end the first F1 test in Spain and has credited the new Renault power unit partnership with McLaren for a productive test debut.

“I’m very happy with what has been an impressive day from the whole team in the garage and at the factory to put that amount of laps on the board between Stoffel and myself,” Alonso said. “The car ran perfectly all day.

“We did some interesting runs with some set-up changes, and we keep discovering more about the new package each time, especially with the integration of the Renault engine that was previously unknown for us.

“It was a very productive day for all of us and I’d like to say well done to everyone for working hard to get through a very full and comprehensive test programme today.”

Collectively McLaren produced 260 laps over the four-day first test despite the limited running of just 11 laps on Wednesday’s washout which was hit by snow and cold temperatures. Alonso suffered the team's only major issue of the test when a broken wheel nut forced him into a dramatic crash at the final corner after just seven laps on the opening day.


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